Friday, May 30, 2014

Friday Fill In #165

I am sitting here in Massachusetts, at "the receiver". We are waiting for 43,000 lbs. of tomato products to be unloaded. While I have a good "hotspot" signal, I am joining in on today's regular fun. 

The "Follow Friday Four Fill-In" is hosted by Hilary at Feeling Beachie . Each week, she posts statement with blanks. Our mission, should we choose to accept, is to copy the statement and fill in the blanks on our blogs. Then link up to her blog for sharing. Hilary is always looking for co-hosts and more statements for us to fill in. Please visit her, and let her know your suggestions!

The statements & My Answers:

1. I drink coffee in the A.M., most days. The rest of the day I drink water, vitamin water, and sometimes iced tea.

2. I read constantly. I don’t review as much as I used to, because I want to share other things, too. I have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge, and reading definitely helps with that. I read mostly nonfiction, though I enjoy good literary fiction, too. The older I get, the more selective I am about what I read. The wonderful thing about reading is that it offers “something for everyone”.

3. Sometimes I wonder why people can’t just respect each other, but then I remind myself that I can’t change others, only myself. I try to always respect others, even when I disagree. Respect is what “agreeing to disagree” is all about.

4. Given the choice between cats and dogs, I’d pick both, every time. Having both in my life is a blessing. They compliment each other and life.





Feeling Beachie

Thursday, May 29, 2014

On the Road, Again


It has been rather busy, lately. Bill got home last Thursday, after being on the road for six weeks. It was wonderful to have him home! The weekend was a whirlwind, naturally. 

On Friday, we met up with his sister (Ronnie) and brother-in-law (Dale) at the family home where they grew up, south of Chicago. We then visited the family graves in remembrance of Memorial Day. We planted flowers there. After that we went out for dinner and visited.

Saturday and Sunday there was gardening and yard work to be done at home. Monday was Memorial Day, and also my birthday. It was very nice to be able to spend that time with Bill. 

Tuesday was last minute preparations for another Road Trip! We left home yesterday (Wednesday). Stella and I are out on another trucking road trip adventure with "Dad" (Bill). I am doing this post from Massachusetts. We have a load of tomato products to deliver tomorrow. After that, we will pick up a load in Massachusetts. From there we are pre-planned to go to Virginia for a delivery. From there, we have no idea what is next.

I have been taking pictures and notes. Stella has been enjoying the grass, as the last Road Trip was in February/March. The snow and ice storms followed us everywhere we went! She was great about everything we asked of her and shared with her. She definitely prefers grass to ice, however. She is so adaptable and loves traveling with us.

We will be on the road for the month of June. Our friend and neighbor is caring for Maggie, Grizelda and Chloe Jo (who would never tolerate this kind of adventure). I will be reading blogs and posts, but don't know how often I will be able to post. I will post, join memes, and comment on others as I can. Please understand. Trucking is so demanding. The hours are irregular, so sleeping, eating and everything else is, too. Please know that I will be back full time in July, with pictures and stories. Thank you all; I appreciate each of you. Hugs.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Monday, May 26, 2014

Searching for SSGT James M. Ray

SSGT. James Michael Ray

On Memorial Day I always honour our fallen military heroes, and I always include SSGT James Michael Ray. Some have asked who he is to me, personally. This is his story and why he matters to me.

I was in ROTC. I take our military, patriotism, honour, and my duty to God and country very seriously. I feel devotion to all who serve, presently and in the past. I enjoy freedom because of their military service.

I have two Vietnam POW/MIA bracelets for the same man. I originally got a bracelet for SSGT James M. Ray from a Vietnam veteran’s organization. After many years, I felt the need to search to find out who he was.

The Internet was not an option at the time, so I wrote letters to many veterans’ organizations. When I finally found his family, I corresponded with his stepmother. She sent me a bracelet made by the family. She also told me who he was to his family, and to his loved ones.

James Michael Ray was born November 10, 1949. He lived in Woonsocket, Rhode Island at the time of his voluntary entrance to the United States Army. He joined the Army at age 17, after being told by the Marines that he was too young to join at age 16.

SSGT Ray was captured by the Viet Cong on March 18, 1968 during military intelligence maneuvers. His country of capture is listed as Cambodia, after an ambush included a rocket-propelled grenade that landed near the position of his unit. He was subsequently held in several jungle prison camps. It is believed that at one point he tried to escape, but was re-captured only to be tortured and eventually starved.

Records prove that prisoners were kept in chains most of the time. At night they were locked in underground pits. They were often moved to various prison camps throughout the jungle. Malaria and dysentery were common and deadly illnesses. At capture, Private Ray was believed to be about 165 lbs. At his last sighting, it is believed he was about 95 lbs.

While no concrete date is known for SSGT Ray’s death, it is officially listed as November 30, 1969. When a prisoner became ill or died, he was taken away and no details were given. Vietnamese records released in 1973 list SSGT James Michael Ray as having died in captivity, probably in 1969. He was last seen by a fellow soldier who knew him, and had been held with him at that time.

Nearly forty years passed before the family decided to honour their loved one in a memorial place. They felt it was time to accept the government findings and official reports that he would not be found. Family members and fellow soldiers who served with SSGT James M. Ray gathered around a white stone marker bearing his name in Arlington National Cemetery on September 7, 2007, for a final memorial service. His burial site is Section MK, Site 83, Arlington National Cemetery. He was honoured with a 21 gun salute. An American memorial flag was presented to his family. 

As of 2014, at least 1,642 Americans are still unaccounted for in Vietnam, including SSGT James Michael Ray. We still search for answers and peace, for them as well as their loved ones.

"Gone but not Forgotten."




Originally posted: May 28, 2013
Memorial Day
Photos: Ray Family

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Brother

Pete lay in his bed at the old Veteran’s Hospital, unable to move or care for himself. Though worn by the years, his mind was still lucid and his memories intact. 

Day after day alone in his room, Pete’s only company was his radio. As he listened to the Memorial Day celebrations, tears slid down his cheeks.

 When the Navy Band played Anchors Aweigh Pete offered a crisp salute to his Brothers in Arms, if only in his mind.



Linked to:
Lillie McFerrin Writes
Word Prompt: Anchor

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday Fill In #164

The "Follow Friday Four Fill-In" is hosted by Hilary at Feeling Beachie . Each week, she posts statement with blanks. Our mission, should we choose to accept, is to copy the statement and fill in the blanks on our blogs. Then link up to her blog for sharing. Hilary is always looking for co-hosts and more statements for us to fill in. Please visit her, and let her know your suggestions!


The statements & My Answers:

1. Rescuing critters gives me a sense of purpose. I feel it is my calling, something that I am meant to do. 

2. I heard that hugging prevents stress and tension. I am a "Hugger". Hugging is very healing for everyone, and one size fits all. 

3. I wish that there was no such thing as abuse or cruelty. This is something that I cannot accept.

4. My favourite clothing color is probably grey; it makes me feel calm and relaxed.



Feeling Beachie

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Good Fences #9


Ranch Fence & Gate, Northeast Texas




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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Farmhouse Porch Chat #140

I am joining Patrice & Wendell at Everyday Ruralty for their weekly "Farmhouse Porch Chat". It has been moved to Wednesday, so I hope to be able to join in more often. I hope you will come along, too. Don't forget to bring Wendell some carrots; he's a horse!

For Wendell

1. Is there one person who can drive you nuts, even if they aren't doing anything in particular?
Oh, my.  Of course there are, but I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.  I am sure I drive some people nuts, too. It drives me nuts when people check up on me, questioning me, what I do, and why.  

2. When you were a small child, how did you answer the question, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" 
I wanted to be a veterinarian or a nurse. I actually combined it and was a veterinary technician. I have also done critter rescue most of my life.

3. Do you drink more sodas, iced tea, or water? 
I drink a lot of water, followed by iced tea. I very rarely drink soda pop. (I really don’t like carbonation.)

4. My favorite flavor of iced cream is mint chocolate chip.

5. Do you like to dance? I used to like to dance. I haven’t in years, due to arthritis and multiple joint replacements. I enjoy watching others dance, now.

Linked to:

Wild Wordless Wednesday


A lone Wild Turkey Hen




Linked to:
Curious as a Cathy

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Rubbish Tuesday #4

Abandoned Mill, Georgia
Sadly, this abandoned mill joined countless other businesses as 
yet another American casualty in an unstable "world market". 


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Sunday, May 18, 2014

Belle's Box

                               
Belle carefully put the tiny box under her pillow, along with a note of explanation. This was important; she had to make sure she did everything exactly right. Finally satisfied, she turned out the light as she got into bed. 

As she snuggled in, Belle proudly touched her tongue to the hole in her smile. The Tooth Fairy would surely be impressed by her very first lost tooth! 

Image: Free Domain

Linked to:
Lillie McFerrin Writes
Word Prompt: "Innocence" 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Home Work


There is always something to do.


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Friday, May 16, 2014

Friday Fill In #163

The "Follow Friday Four Fill-In" is hosted by Hilary at Feeling Beachie. Each week, she posts statement with blanks. Our mission, should we choose to accept, is to copy the statement and fill in the blanks on our blogs. Then link up to her blog for sharing. Hilary is always looking for co-hosts and more statements for us to fill in. Please visit her, and let her know your suggestions!

The statements & My Answers:

1. I wish the Spirit of Christmas would always stay in people’s hearts, permanently, year ‘round.

2. You’ll need a strong power of persuasion when you try to change my mind about something I deeply believe . I am not easily swayed. I need facts and undeniable proof.

3. If I go to a restaurant it must have cleanliness! I do like small town “Mom & Pop” diners, as they are usually really good. “Greasy spoons” are different; those are hit or miss

4. My must have holiday baking treat is fudge. I like homemade fudge, but have never made it. It is a real treat when I have it. The one I always make is fruitcake. It is my own recipe, and people who don’t like fruitcake like it. That is an honour.


Whatever you do this weekend, I hope it is fun!
                                                                              (Source Unknown)


Linked To:
Feeling Beachie

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Hero Cat



Tara, the cat, rescues her human boy!
Four years ago she had been a stray, when 
the family rescued her & took her into their home.
Tara earned her keep and proved her worth.
They bought her a fish tank for rescuing the boy.

Good Fences #8

 
Michigan International Speedway
NASCAR Race Track, Brooklyn, MI.
at dawn, from outside the main gates/fence.

Turn 4, coming towards the main grandstand.
You can see the safety "catch" fence that runs 
around the track between spectators & race cars.
While not attractive, these fences are important.

The NASCAR safety "catch" fence stands about 
22 feet high and can be found at all race tracks.
It is an essential fence that protects and saves 
lives of both NASCAR drivers and their fans.  

Mark Martin, 1998 
seen through the safety "catch" fence

Dale Earnhardt, 1998, on Pit Road
Seven time NASCAR Cup Champion 

Pit Road exit, through the safety "catch" fence.


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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Tent

Grizelda often plays alone, and can even be a bit elusive. She is much more reserved and independent than her little sister, the infamous Chloe Jo. However she does have moments of silliness, too. I happened to catch Grizelda playing in her favourite place: the Tent.
 Where is that mouse?!

What the heck? Seriously, Mom? I'm busy now. 

Good grief...

Never mind.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Rubbish Tuesday #3

West Texas

Abandoned Homes


As I travel with Bill in his "big rig", my pictures are all taken at 60-65 MPH, through the window (and around the huge mirrors) of the rig. I take pictures of things that speak to me. Please bear with me; it is a challenge. 

Traveling through West Texas, was interesting, as part of my childhood was spent in East Texas. I enjoyed seeing the cotton fields and cotton gins. The oil fields were as I remembered. I always enjoy seeing the cattle, especially the Texas Long-Horn cattle. 

However, I was saddened by the condition of the many abandoned homes, buildings, and things just left standing. With all of the homeless people now, it it a shame to see empty, abandoned homes. One of the most surprising things was the trash along the roads, though. One expects to see this in urban areas, but throughout West Texas this is an obvious, widespread problem. 

A yard of abandoned items

 

Widespread roadside trash 


I would like to hope that they find a solution for this problem. In many other areas and states, communities  or organizations "adopt highways". Some of the the organizations are scout troops, high school clubs, church groups, and even businesses. It would be a great solution to have the oil companies and corporations pitch in to clean up the area. They could then do routine clean-ups and then recycle much of the trash. There are solutions, and I hope Texas finds one soon, because it is worth it.

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Monday, May 12, 2014

Professional Beggar


Bill made friends with a "tom cat" who was about nine months old. They met at the Pilot Truck Stop, in Greenville, VA. The young Tom was friendly with Bill and let him pet him. He had no intentions of going anywhere, though Bill was tempted to rescue him. The Tom just wanted to be fed. So, he was pleased when Bill bought him a can of turkey dinner with gravy, from the truck stop store. 

As a trucker, Bill meets these "professional beggars", both cats and dogs, every now and then. Usually you cannot get close to them. Bill respects each critter and their space. He knows how hard they have it. When he meets one, he does what he can to make life a little bit easier for them, even if it is for just one day. 

I would not be surprised if one of these days Bill meets one that becomes his trucking buddy. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

For Mothers


This is for all mothers, everywhere. 
This is for the women who love unconditionally, 
making sure the needs of others are met, 
often forsaking their own. 
This is for her because her pride is not in herself, 
but in those she loves.

This is for mothers whose hearts are whole,
and those whose hearts are broken, 
because both are made of love.

Whether your babies are flesh and blood, 
or fur and fuzz, this is for you. 
You deserve this, because 
Love is its own reward.

Happy Mother's Day.


 
Written By: McGuffy Ann Morris
Originally posted: May 7, 2011

Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday Four Fill In #162

The "Follow Friday Four Fill-In" is hosted by Hilary at Feeling Beachie . Each week, she posts statement with blanks. Our mission, should we choose to accept, is to copy the statement and fill in the blanks on our blogs. Then link up to her blog for sharing. Hilary is always looking for co-hosts and more statements for us to fill in. Please visit her, and let her know your suggestions!

The statements & My Answers:

1. Did you know that Bald Eagles are no longer endangered or even threatened? They were removed from the lists in 2007, after being endangered for several decades due in large part to the use of pesticides. They are thriving across our nation, once again. *See The List!

2. I feel like time is passing by faster each and every day.

3. I get very upset at cases of true injustice.

4. Cool, overcast, and rainy is my favourite kind of day. I actually consider it a blessing for my birthday (which, unfortunately, is soon).





Linked To:
Feeling Beachie